Monthly Archives: April 2013

Nobody right, nobody wrong

“One argument that none of us can hide, is the one that’s ragin’ down deep inside. Tryin’ to make a point or have the last word, but most the time people just tryin’ to be heard. They say you got to chose your side and when it’s done..nobody right, nobody wrong.”                                                      Michael Franti; “Nobody Right, Nobody Wrong” 

People forgive each other everyday, from the littlest missteps, to the sudden trips, or the greatest falls. Forgiveness is oftentimes taken for granted. People do not take the time to appreciate the courage in forgiveness. The courage it takes to forgive, and to ask for forgiveness, should be treasured by both individuals.

Forgiveness is a building block for happiness. When a person forgives, it builds a friendship, a trust, an unbreakable bond. The person who forgives realizes the courage within the person who apologized, and the greatness they could not live without. The person who apologizes shows immense courage, proving that they understand the feelings of the other person.

It was once said that, “Success cannot be achieved without unity.” Success may take on many definitions. Unity requires the ability to be able to forgive, and the ability to ask for forgiveness.

Mistakes are inevitable, but our reaction to these mistakes is what gives us life.

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Amor

Writing about love is an interesting venture. I feel as if I am one of the few not afraid to admit that love is incredibly important to me. With love, my few close friends become family, the children I spent time with in Guatemala become my reason to keep on, and a stranger becomes a star in my life’s story.

I’m a believer in deciding to love. This can be applied to anyone- loving a family member, a friend, a stranger, or the most mysterious love- the love of someone you hope to spend the rest of your life with. I do think their are certain people you are more apt to decide to love, which I believe comes from shared values, or experiences. However, that is something that is still a mystery to me. There are people in life who you may desire to love more than others.

But, love is a forever word. After you decide to love it stays with you, growing or fading. From my experience, I do not believe it disappears. However, I think something important to learn is that a heart does mend. Love may not disappear, but the love you find for someone else WILL be greater than the love you had once before, and pain becomes nonexistent.

Matilde had an interesting thought. She said that, “you should miss someone in the best of times; that is when you love.” Powerful. You want the person you love to share each moment with you, feeling and experiencing what you do. The eagerness to tell someone you love a funny, or random, story… that’s beautiful to me.

I love you. Te quiero. Te amo. Te encanto. It’s a forever phrase.

¿Qué valoras?

As I sat in the Rainbow Cafe with Matilde in Antigua, Guatemala, we contemplated living. We both know we want to do something extraordinary with our lives, and living the normal seemed a depressing circumstance for both of us.

It was decided that the norm went something like this – childhood filled with discovery, school, vacations, school, work and fall in love, get married, have beautiful children, reach some career goals, relax, die. That description wasn’t meant to be crude, it was just how I thought of the norm. But then it hit me, people who live the norm CAN BE happy, sometimes that’s even the path people WANT. Why? Well, I can’t answer that question. I’m setting myself up to do something extraordinary. However, I learned I am in no place to judge someone for not striving for extraordinary if happiness is what they value, and what they found. Especially if they found love. But then again, I should not even judge their values. What if their value was success, and they found it by living the norm? That is a feat to be proud of! It’s just not me, and I cannot fool myself.

Now that I had no problem outlining what I am not, the tough part comes trying to convey who I am. I know I value love, happiness, and the extraordinary. Love – it takes so many forms, and with love you can do so much. In my dreams of starting a non-profit organization I know love will be so important. Everyone needs love. (And if you don’t believe this, I am actually curious your argument so please comment below!) Happiness – it’s a perspective. How are you going to look at the world? The extraordinary – take risks. I know many people will despise me for saying this, but YOLO. Do something EXTRAORDINARY that you LOVE everyday, with a HAPPY heart.

Happy: enjoying, showing, or marked by pleasure, satisfaction, or joy.

The ultimate question: Am I happy in my life? And, if I’m not happy, what can I do to get there?

Why is happiness so important? I mean it must be important if our founding fathers put it in the Declaration of Independence.“Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.” Our happiness is protected by the government…must be a big deal then! People always say, “just be happy.” But, if there is a bunch of things distracting your happiness – heartbreak, deadlines, a negative friend – how the heck are you supposed to “just be happy”?

I surprised myself. I discovered that regardless of whatever is roadblocking your happiness, a change of outlook can make you feel like the happiest person alive.

Matilde, an amazing friend, who I met when helping at El Buen Samaritino (a wonderful organization teaching children who otherwise would not have the opportunity of education) was the driving force in ‘figuring out my life’. (need some help with this expression? Check out my definition at the end of this post) I was really missing my friends and family while in Guatemala, and I told her that I didn’t understand why this was happening because I was only there for a week. She told me that missing them is a GREAT thing, especially in my ‘figuring out my life’ phase, that it meant I am happy in the life I am living, missing the happiness I was used to. WOW. She was right. And being in Guatemala, around so much joy, reinforced that I am happiest when I am impacting society, spreading some love.

So, I figured that out. I am happy in my life. But, there is many more things to figure out..Purpose. Love. What am I doing. What’s important to me.

If you’re going to read anything in this post, read this. Gandhi summed it up perfectly, “Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.”
So, now that I am back in the United States I am ready to take on thinking, saying, and doing all the same. Wanting to change the world one helping hand at a time.

‘figuring out my life’  an obscure wording  I use to describe my endless thoughts on..achieving ultimate happiness, understanding what love means to me, how can I let my passions shine everyday, how can I show people how amazing they really are..to name a few. 

Soul Time

I traveled to Jocotenango, Guatemala in March 2013, because I was sick of sitting on the beach and doing nothing over my spring breaks. I knew I wanted to help people when I was there, and hopefully gain a new perspective on what living really means. I didn’t understand love. I didn’t understand the purpose of living. I often questioned if I was actually happy in my life. So I packed a bag and headed there for a week, alone, ready to figure out my life. (I’m not sure what this blog will ultimately be about, but I’m sure my endless thoughts in Guatemala will take up most of the posts.)

Before I left for Guatemala, I told my mom that I was determined to figure out my life during this week. She seemed happy for me, and then asked, “What if you don’t, what if you don’t feel inspired?” I laughed at the thought, but I took it to heart. What if I don’t find out anything, and I returned to the exact conundrums in my life that I was trying to escape? Well, that would just suck big time.

That did not happen, though. I figured out just what I set out to. And for some reason, I feel like sharing some of those ideas with the world.